Thursday, May 27, 2010


The abuse of intoxicating liquors early led to the formation of temperance societies to influence public opinion on the subject, and to help those who were endeavoring to overcome the appetite for strong drink. The first temperance(tem.per.ants) society in the United States was formed at Litchfield, Connecticut in 1789, by 200 farmers who pledged themselves not to use liqueurs and carrying on their farm work. Early in the present century the temperance movement became organized and the churches, especially the Methodist and Presbyterian, were active in the work. The Massachusetts Temperance Society was formed in 1813 and the American Temperance Union 1826. The early societies were strictly temperance societies and not total abstinence organizations. They did not oppose the use of wine, cider or malt liquors, a brewery being built in Boston by the temperance reformers. The first national temperance convention met in Philadelphia in 1833 and formed a national temperance union, with twenty-three state societies and over 7,000 other societies . "Total abstinence from all that intoxicates" was first insisted on in 1833 by the Massachusetts society.

The Washington Temperance Society was formed by six reformed drunkards, at Baltimore, in 1840, and was very successful in its special work of reforming hard drinkers. The Sons of Temperance was another society which numbered in 1850 about 240,000 members. The Good Templars another temperance order, founded in 1852, is a secret society with passwords, grips, etc., with a membership of about 750,000. The most remarkable movement in the temperance cause is, perhaps, what is known as the Crusade, which began in Washington Court House,Ohio, in 1873. It was a crusade of women against saloons, and the weapons used were prayer, persuasion and persistence. The orchestrated movement spread rapidly and was the means of closing many saloons, in some places all that were in operation. The Woman's Christian Temperance Union is the successor to this temperance crusade. It has been organizations in every state and territory of the United States, in Great Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, Japan, Madagascar, South Africa and the Hawaiian islands. It has been active and distributing temperance literature, in securing the study of temperance science in the public schools, in the establishment of homes for girls, and securing laws forbidding the sale of tobacco to children. The badge is a bow of white ribbon. The headquarters are at Chicago, where the society has built the Woman's Temperance Temple.

The first laws against the use of liquor were made in Massachusetts, 1639, and about the same time in Connecticut. In 1756 a duty was imposed on imported liquors in Pennsylvania, and in 1774 the first continental congress proposed to the different states the passing of laws to stop the distilling of liquors. The ration of grog in the army was changed to coffee in 1832. License laws were passed in some states, but met with strong opposition. After the supreme court had decided in favor of probationary, in 1847, Maine was the first state to make use of the power. Delaware, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Michigan, Iowa, Indiana and Kansas have all passed laws prohibiting the sale of liquors, but the law was repealed in most of the states, and license laws substituted. The temperance movement in Great Britain began in Scotland in 1828. Under father Mathew 1,800,000 persons joined the total abstinence societies, and the amount of whiskey used in Ireland diminished one-half in three years. The National Temperance League, British Temperance League, Irish Temperance, Scottish Temperance League, and North of England Temperance League, are among the principal temperance organizations in Great Britain.

Because of Prohibition organized crime blossomed and families like the Kennedy's rose to power; courts and prisons systems became overloaded; and endemic corruption of police and public officials occurred as planned by the Unknown Superior which ultimately all secret societies work for. The sheep in the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, had been pivotal in bringing about national Prohibition in the United States of America, believing it would protect families, women and children from the effects of abuse of alcohol.